Older posters may remember during the 1980s the SWP and their "downturn" theory. Yet with the rose-tinted glasses of hindsight the Eighties seem like a positively balmy climate for the growth of working class militancy/the left/protest movements/resistance (delete according to your preference). These feel like bleaker times than I've ever encountered before. We've just seen the Italian Left take an absolute beating. What passes for protest movements in this country seem (from a distance) to be largely engaged with the most toxic self-destruction on social media. The organisations (from the SWP to the AFed) are seemingly on the brink of extinction. Otherwise sensible people are no longer throwing eggs at Labour MPs but instead placing them all in their baskets. Even here on Urban, weeks can go by without there being anything of real substance on P&P. Even the bearpit is preferable to the tumbleweeds. I'm sure many of us still plug away, doing what we can, where we can. But, fuck me, it's depressing.